Flame Broiler Promotes Christian Lee to Chief Operating Officer

HW- Christian Lee, Flame Broiler

The New Leadership Position Was Created to Foster Continued Growth in the Franchise System

Flame Broiler, a Korean-inspired quick-service restaurant franchise, promoted Chrisitan Lee to chief operating officer (COO). As COO, he will oversee the entire franchise system’s operations. Lee previously served as head of business operations. Along with Lee, Flame Broiler’s leadership team expanded with his brother Daniel’s move to Chief Technology Officer and Chief Marketing Officer. 

Lee has been deeply involved in every aspect of his family business since he was in high school mopping floors and shredding office papers. “I’ve spent the last 10-plus years learning and growing, being hands-on with everything from restaurant operations to supply chain, people, strategy, restaurant development, and training. Creating this COO position was a strategic move to increase the level of leadership in the company, allowing others to grow and, ultimately, leverage it as a next step in the future.” 

He looks forward to leading in a way that honors guests, franchisees, employees, and his family’s legacy. “I’m grateful for the opportunity and can’t wait to share our brand story and feed more people [with] our healthy meals.”

Chrisitan Lee, Flame Broiler
Christian Lee is the new COO of Flame Broiler. 

To Lee, people are at Flame Broiler’s core. “We are in the business of serving people. This defines our values, mission, menu, and operating practices. It’s how my dad started the company, and it’s how we will continue to operate the business for generations to come.”

A Franchising Family

When Lee was in college and his brother was a recent graduate, they became Flame Broiler franchisees. “We operated the restaurant for four years to gain hands-on experience in every aspect of running a successful restaurant. Through this experience, we fell in love with the business model and the industry as a way to serve people and the community.”

Christian appreciates the opportunity that franchising provides for entrepreneurs to become business owners. “It’s rewarding to get to partner with local franchisees to help them be successful and build generational wealth and legacies for their families.” Flame Broiler has done just that for the Lee family.

Christian and Daniel Lee, Flame Broiler
Christian Lee (left) and his brother Daniel.

“Our family works extremely well together because we share values and a common vision for the company. This alignment coupled with the willingness to invest in building our relationships is a potent combo. It’s not always easy, but we prioritize having empathy for each other and constantly seek to understand one another better.” To Lee, this allows them to bring their unique and different strengths to the table and lead together as a family. “It’s motivating for us to strive towards accomplishing our mission together.” 

Keeping Up with the Times

Lee and his brother led the company through the pandemic and played a role in modernizing its technology to keep up with the changing fast-food industry. The franchise differentiates itself from the competition with its app. “We’re proud to offer the Flame Broiler app because it’s a direct contributor to our mission of simplifying access to our healthy food. The app provides an easy, quick, and seamless way for our guests to order their favorite meals.” 

Lee added that the app gives customers personalized experiences and rewards them through a loyalty program. “Over the past 28 years, we’ve built an incredibly loyal base of customers who visit us very frequently, so the app works perfectly to elevate their experience.”

The best way for franchisors to improve their operations is through building culture, Lee advised. “Good systems and processes are essential, but it’s the company’s culture that informs what we do and how we do it. Everything is impacted by culture, and the people who are part of it. When you have a strong, healthy culture, improved operations will come naturally.”

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Haley Cafarella is a passionate journalist and content developer. In her role as content and marketing specialist for IFPG, she creates original content for the franchise broker network's ongoing initiatives and writes articles for FranchiseWire.com.
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